Former alcoholic adman’s new book invites us to reframe our relationship with death
How can you achieve long-lasting happiness? Or transform your relationship with grief, death and dying? And what is happiness anyway? These questions (and more) are asked and answered in Martin O’Toole’s ambitious new book, How To Die Happy.
Ambitious why? Because, by the author’s own admission: “As the title suggests, this book rises to the challenge of answering one of life’s great mysteries — in one volume”. Since many excellent books already tackle specific facets of mindfulness, mental health, and personal and spiritual development, this is indeed a noteworthy analysis of one of life’s most sought-after prizes. Perhaps its uniqueness lies in the author’s combination of personal experiences, curated ancient and contemporary wisdom, and a whole host of practical utilities for the art of living well. The book’s also received Lee Holden’s seal of approval by way of a lighthearted foreword personably penned by the qi gong instructor, author, and TV personality:
“This madman has found a way to weave such wisdom into a tapestry of interconnected insight and understanding. The result is a charming and witty guide to attaining happiness that is both heartfelt and funny”.
— Lee Holden, founder of Holden Qi Gong
Martin O’Toole is “a man on the mend”, a recovered high-functioning alcoholic adman who left London to live a mindful life in Bali. With a material- and drama-obsessed past life of “spilt milk under burnt bridges” and having narrowly avoided suicide, O’Toole says suffering is by far the best teacher for anyone seeking a sustainably contented life. He credits the healing powers of the potent South American psychedelic medicine, Ayahuasca, for launching his phenomenal journey of personal transformation. This, combined with other alternative practices, has dramatically changed his perspective on life, death, and dying.
“If you told me now that I had five minutes left to live, I’d spend that time basking in gratitude for the incredible gift of life”.
— Martin O’Toole, How To Die Happy
Through his experiences of the “pointless pursuance of success”, Martin uncovered “The Anatomy of Happy” — a process outlining the alchemy of everlasting happiness, which he says anyone can follow, provided they’re willing to work. Through understanding the depths of depression and contrasting heights of delight, he felt compelled to share his story, thus (aged 47) publishing his first psycho-spiritual book, which he insists will not be his last.
About The Author
Born in Yorkshire, England, Martin O’Toole was an adman and high-functioning alcoholic for over 20 years. The writer and podcaster (the How To Die Happy podcast) left his hectic existence in London to live a mindful life in Indonesia.
Beating addiction and depression with psychedelic plant medicines and ancient Eastern practices and philosophies, he discovered “The Anatomy of Happy”.
Martin O’Toole is an emerging author of psycho-spiritual self-help books. Subscribe to his mailing list at howtodiehappybook.com for regular updates and twice-monthly blogs.